Google Cross-Channel Attribution Reporting Set To Increase Mobile Ad Budgets

The last-click attribution model pointing to search and the bottom of the funnel will go through a transition when Google releases its cross-device report. Industry chatter puts that delivery in the hands of marketers by the end of August. It will allow marketers to see click streams that confirm support by mobile search and other media, according to Suzy Sandberg, president of PM Digital's Global Digital Media division.

The PM Digital report, "Search Rewind: Retail Trends, Benchmarks, and Insights for Q2 2013," released Monday digs into the latest trends and provides a perspective of several search factors influencing marketing.

Cross-device reporting will let marketers see a search trail leading from a smartphone to a tablet to a desktop. Not having that insight stifles marketing budgets. "I see this as a huge growth push for paid search on mobile," she said. "Mobile search campaign budgets are low, but the minute we have a reporting structure that proves conversions, budgets will spike."



The report identifies a trend by mobile to outgrow desktop, but conversions and demand generation lag because no one can see the attribution trail.

Cross-device reporting is Google's second-largest initiative of the year, according to Sandberg, but companies willing to streamline the order process on smartphones also will increase sales, driving up budgets across the board. Sandberg said some retailers see between 40% and 50% of traffic from mobile devices, but smartphones only contribute 5% to 10%.

Many companies put tests for search campaigns on hold during the past three months as campaigns moved to Google Enhanced Campaigns from the older AdWords platform, but companies are nearing the completion of that task.

Aside from attribution and enhanced campaigns, the report focuses on product listing ads (PLAs) that findings suggest divert more than 30% of clicks from non-brand search. Companies are spending more ad dollars to support PLAs because it has been discovered that while Google will not display more than one paid-search ad in query results, it will serve up multiple PLAs from one advertiser per query.

With PLAs come new technological requirements to support them, expertise by search marketers to manage them, and key performance indicators that alter historic non-brand paid-search standards.

Web browsers, Safari, Firefox, Explorer and Chrome continue to disrupt third-party cookie tracking, causing an increase in keyword "Not Provided" Google messages, according to the report.

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